CCP 4.2.M.c - Therapeutic (Qutāru) M

Catalogue information
British Museum
BM 44243
81-7-1,2004
Babylon(Babylon)
CDLI: 
P461217
Publication
Copy: 
Geller unpub. copy
Commentary
MedicalTherapeutic texts

Broken

Base text: 
Therapeutic (Qutāru)
Commentary no: 
M
Duplicates
Tablet information
Babylonian
Fragment
Columns: 
1
Lines: 
8
Neo/Late Babylonian, specifics unknown
Bibliography

Frahm, 2011E. Frahm, Babylonian and Assyrian Text Commentaries. Origins of Interpretation. Ugarit-Verlag, 2011.: 236, 240

Geller, 2010bM. J. Geller, Ancient Babylonian Medicine: Theory and Practice. Wiley-Blackwell, 2010.
[Partial duplicate of BRM 4 32]
: 176

Record
Geller, 12/2010 (Identification)
Geller, 12/2010 (Copy)
Jiménez, 12/2017 (Introduction)
By Mary Frazer | Make a correction or suggestion
How to cite
Frazer, M., 2017, “Commentary on Therapeutic (Qutāru) (CCP 4.2.M.c),” Cuneiform Commentaries Project (E. Frahm, E. Jiménez, M. Frazer, and K. Wagensonner), 2013–2021; accessed October 27, 2021, at https://ccp.yale.edu/P461217. DOI: 10079/kprr59d
© Cuneiform Commentaries Project (Citation Guidelines)
Introduction

This tablet is known to us through the generosity of Mark Geller, who identified it in the British Museum and shared with us his unpublished copy. The edition below is greatly indebted to it.

The tablet contains remains of a commentary that runs paralleled to the long Qutāru commentary MLC 1863 (CCP 4.2.M.a). The present manuscript, however, seems to be even more verbose than MLC 1863: thus, an explanation that occupies only one line in MLC 1863 (l. 2) takes up lines in this version (ll. 2–5).

The edition below is a composite edition of all three known manuscripts. To see an edition of this fragment alone, click on “Manuscript” view below.

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Commentary M on Qutaru

upper edge
00ina a-mat AN.DIŠ AN.DIŠ AN.AN PAB?.PAB? NI d- dnin-gìrim liš-lim1

At the command of the gods , Kusu (and) Ningirim may it be a success!

obverse
11SI DÀRA.MAŠ : qar-nu a-a-lu : SI : qar-nu : DÀRA.MAŠ : a-a-lu : DIŠ : šum-mu : AN.TA.ŠUB.BA : mar-ṣa iḫ-tan-naq ù ÚḪ-su ŠUB.ŠUBa : AN.TA.ŠUB.BA2

“Stag’s horn” (Sumerian) means “stag’s horn” (because) “horn” (Sumerian) means “horn” (and) “stag” (Sumerian) means “stag”. “If” (Sumerian) means “if”. “Fallen-from-heaven” (Sumerian) is (when) “with respect to the sick man, he suffocates and expectorates repeatedly”; “Fallen-from-heaven” (and)

22dLUGAL.ÙR.RA : IGI-MIN 15-šú u 150-šú i-kap-pi-iṣ dLUGAL.ÙR.RA : ŠU.DINGIR.RA : DINGIR-MEŠ i-nam-zar šil-lat i-qab-bi šá im-mar i-maḫ-ḫaṣ ŠU.DINGIR.RA : ŠU.dINNIN.NA : 3

“Lord-of-the-roof” are (when) “the right and his left eye roll up. “Lord-of-the-roof” is (also the same as) “Hand-of-the-god”, (which) is (when) “he (i.e., the sick man) curses the gods, speaks blasphemy, (and) hits whatever he sees.” “Hand-of-the-god” is (also) the same as “Hand-of-the-goddess”,

33ḫu-uṣ-ṣi GAZ ŠÀ TUK.TUKši ù INIM-MEŠ-šú im-ta-na-áš-ši ŠU.dINNIN.NA : ŠU.GIDIM.MA <:> GEŠTUG-MIN-MEŠ-šú .-MEŠ ma-gal iṭ-ṭè--pi šin-na-šú ana ma-ka-le-e4

(which) is (when) “he (i.e., the sick man) will repeatedly contract abdominal pain and keeps forgetting his words.” “Hand-of-the-goddess-disease” is (also the same as) “Hand-of-the-ghost-disease”, (which) is (when) “his (the sick man’s) ears ring, a poultice is firmly applied, (and) he cannot bring his teeth near food”

44la ú-qar-ra-ba-ma ŠU.GIDIM.MA : ..BI : e-pu--ta-šú : nap-šar-šú : ú-ru-di-su : ta-a : a-par : ḫu-up-pat* :* šup-lu BÙR** : šup-lu : a-par šá SAG.DU5

(this) is “Hand-of-the-ghost.” “Its ritual” (Sumerian) means “its ritual”. “Its uvula” means “its trachea”. “…” means covering; cavity means “depression”, (which can be written) “BUR₃{+ru₃}”; “depression” means covering of the head

55u BÙR** : Ì ḪUL : nap-ṭu <<u>> Ì KU₆ : šam-ni nu-ú-nu : A.RI.A NAM..U₁₈.LU : úmaš-ta-kal : áš-šú úA.RI.A : úmaš-ta-kal šá-niš A.RI.A : ri-ḫu- : 6

and depression of the neck.” “Naptha” (Sumerian) means “naptha”. “Fish oil” (Sumerian) means “fish oil”. “Human semen (A.RI.A NAM.LU₂.U₁₈.LU) (Sumerian) means maštakal-plant”, because “steppe plant (úA.RI.A) (Sumerian) means maštakal-plant”; alternatively, “semen” (Sumerian) (simply) means “semen”.

66TÚG.NÍG.DÁRA : ú-la-pi : ŠU.LÁL : lu-up-pu-ut-tu₄ : TÚG.NÍG.DÁRA ŠU.LÁL : UZU KA₅.A : útara-muš : ki-ma SUḪUŠ úsi-il-qa : úIGI-lim ki-ma GÌR.PAD.DU NAM..U₁₈.LU7

“Towel” (Sumerian) means “towel”; “soiled” (Sumerian) means “soiled”; “soiled towel” (Sumerian) means “fox-flesh(-plant) (Sumerian). Taramuš-plant” means (it is) like mangel-wurzel root”. “It-confronted-1000-plant” (means) (it is) like human bone”.

77: úIGI-MAN ki-ma šá-ru-ru d15 šá-niš úIGI-MAN ki-ma Ú dUTU NUMUN-šú ki-ma ši-gu--ti : MÚD ka-mi-i MÚD ga-ar-ba-nu áš-šú ka-mu-ú : 8

“It-confronted-20-plant” (means) (it is) like the radiance of Ishtar”; alternatively, “‘it-confronted-20’-plant” (means) (it is) like the sunflower”; its seed is like the šigguštu(-plant). “Blood of a prisoner” (means) “blood of a leper” because “prisoner” can refer to (lit. means)

88ga-ar-ba-nu šá-niš MÚD qa-du-úmušen : 1niš : ki-ma <<:>> -ten it-ti a-ḫa-miš ḪI.ḪI : ḪI.ḪI : ba-la-lu : ŠE.MUŠ₅ : ši-gu-šú -me up-pu-lu : KUŠ dku-ši : 9

a leper; alternatively (it means) “blood of an owl”. “Together” (Sumerian) means “as one”. (In the phrase) “to mix with one another”, “mix” (Sumerian) means “mix” (Akkadian); šigūšu-flour” (Sumerian) means “dried šeguššu-flour”. “Hide of Kūšu” means

99KUŠ GU₄ ṣal-mu šá ina ABUL URU šá imMAR.TU ina muḫ-ḫi ŠINIG dku-ši in--ep-pu- : til-lat <<:>> dku-ši : til-lat šá ŠINIG šá KUŠ GU₄ ṣal-mu ana dku-ši10

“hide of a black ox” which is at the western city-gate, over which tamarisk of Kūšu is constructed; “vine of Kūšu” means “vine of tamarisk” (l. 10) over which (l. 9) hide of a black ox (l. 10) is placed (l. 9) for Kūšu.

1010ina UGU šak-na : MÁŠ.ZU : ki-iz-zu : MÁŠ : ú-ri-ṣa : ZU : e-du-ú : šam-ma ḪAB : tu-na-as-su-ma : ki-ma ba-aṣ-ṣa : úURI ki-ma ŠINIG u SA₅ : 11

(Male) goat” (Sumerian) means (male) goat” (Akkadian); “a goat” (Sumerian) means “goat” (Akkadian); “to know” (Sumerian) means “to know” (Akkadian). Smelly plant means “you remove” means (it is) like sand”. Urṭû(-plant) (means) (it is) like tamarisk and red”.

1111ú-da-nu : ki-ma ḫal-la e-re-bi : Ú.DILI : ki-ma ḫal-la TUmušen : šim.dMAŠ NITA ki-ma qu-lip- ŠINIG ka-ṣar u SA₅ ni-kip- MUNUS ki-ma qu-lip- ŠINIG12

Amīlānu-plant” means (it is) like the seed of (lit. “raven droppings”). “Single-plant” means (it is) like the seed of the false carob (lit. “dove droppings”). “Male nikiptu(-plant) (means) (it is) like tamarisk bark, (insofar as) it is solid and red”; “female nikiptu(-plant) (means) (it is also) like tamarisk bark,

1212raq-qa-qu u a-ru-qu : PIŠ₁₀-dÍD ÚḪ.dÍD : PIŠ₁₀-dÍD a-ru-uq-tu₄ : PIŠ₁₀-dÍD A.GAR.GAR.dÍD : PIŠ₁₀-dÍD ṣa-li-in-du : 13

(but) very thin and yellow-green. Ruttītu-sulphur” means “yellow-green sulphur”, agargarītu-sulphur” means “black sulphur”,

1313PIŠ₁₀-dÍD BA.BA.ZA.dÍD : PIŠ₁₀-dÍD pe-ṣi-tu₄ : MUN eme-sal- : MUN šá lìb-bi ÍD : ILLU šimBULUḪ <:> ḫi-i-lu šá a-na a-su-tu₄ in--pu- : ILLU LI.DUR14

pappasītu-sulphur” means “white sulphur”. Emesallu-salt” means “salt from the middle of the river”. Baluhhu-resin” (means) “resin which is prepared for medicinal purposes”. Abukkatu-resin”

1414: ki-ma e-pe-ri a-sur-re-e : šimḪAB : ṭu-ri : in-za-ru-ú : ḫi-biš-ti : šimGÚR.GÚR šá ḫúp-pe-e lìb-bu-ú šimBULUG šim-meš-la šimGÚG.GÚG : šimMUG ŠIM.ŠAL15

means (it is) like dust-from-the-bottom-of-a-wall”. The aromatic šimHAB means opoponax. Inzarû(-plant) means “cuttings”. Kukru-aromatic” (means) “that which is crushed”, as in ballukku-aromatic, šimeššalû-aromatic (and) kukru-aromatic mean ballukku-aromatic, šimeššalû-aromatic

1515ḫi-biš-ti šá ina ÉN* Eu ŠIM-ḪI.A : ú-ru-ú : la-ba-na-tu₄ : gišEREN.BAD : šu-pu-uḫ-ri : gišEREN.BAD šá-niš bal-ṭi-it-tu₄ šá ŠÀ gišEREN : MUN a-ma-nu Ù.MU.UN : a-ma-nu16

(and) cuttings”, which are mentioned in the incantation corpus/ the incantation ‘…’. “Aromatics” (Sumerian) means urû(-plants), (which) means “incense.” gišEREN.BAD” (Sumerian) means “old cedar?”; gišEREN.BAD” alternatively (means) “a woodworm which inhabits the cedar tree”. (Regarding) amānu-salt”: U₃.MU.UN means amānu,

1616[Ù].MU.UN : da-mu áš-šú MUN sa-mat šá kurma-da-a-a : IM.SA₅ : šèr-šèr-ri : úkur-ka-nu-ú ki-ma su-ḫa-tu₄ gul-lu-ub úkur-ka-nu-ú šá šá-di-i17

(and) U₃.MU.UN (also) means “blood”, with respect to the red salt of Media. “Red clay” (Sumerian) means “red clay” (Akkadian). Kurkānû-plant” (means) (it is) like a shaved armpit”; kurkānû-plant-of-the-mountain”

1717[úx]-x-aḫ : úkur-ka-nu-ú šá ma-a- úsa-pal-gi-na : Ì.GIŠ BUR : Ì.GIŠ pàr : bi--il-ti : BUR : bi--il-ti šá-niš Ì.NUN.NA šal-šiš Ì ḫal-ṣa re-bi-18

[(means) “…] …”; kurkānû-plant-of-the-land” means sapalginu-plant.” “Oil in a pūru(-vessel) (Sumerian) is (pronounced?) “oil in a par-vessel”, biʾiltu-(vessel). means pūru(-vessel) (Sumerian); biʾiltu-(vessel) secondly (means) “ghee”; thirdly (it means) “pressed oil”. Fourthly

1818[...] TU.RA.KÌLIB.BA : nap-ḫar mur-ṣu : úLAL : ki-ma gišḪAŠḪUR ina -reb tam- a-šar šam-mu u gišGI la ba-šu-ú ina IGI A-MEŠ È ina muḫ-ḫi-šú19

[(it means) “…”.] “Panacea” (Sumerian) means “panacea” (Akkadian). Ašqulālu-plant” means (it is) like an apple-tree; it grows at the entrance to the sea where there is neither plant nor reed, in front of water; on it

1919[...] x :? giš*AL.LA.AN sar-ri : úA.ZAL. : ki-ma úka-na-šu-ú u SA₅ : úA.ZAL. : Ú ni-is-sat ma-še-e : úKUR.KUR : 20

[] means “false oak”; the azallû-plant” means (it is) like the kanašû-plant and is red”; azallû-plant” means (it is) a plant for forgetting worries”. The ataʾīsu-plant” means

2020[...] x ze-e e-re-bi : KU.ḫe-ḫeKU : su-pan-du : gul-gul NAM..U₁₈.LU : ŠINIG : UZU NAM..U₁₈.LU : 21

[] “raven droppings” means “KU.KU (pronounced ḫeḫe) (which) means powder; “human skull” means “tamarisk”; “human flesh” means

2121[...] x x x ap?-pa?-ri? :? šá ap-pa-ri : sik-kat : pa-ʾ-ṣa!(A-)nu šá LÙNGA sim-di šá ŠE.BAR u GAZIsar 1niš ḪI.ḪI-ma22

[] “… reedbed means “of the reedbed”; yeast means “the crushings of the brewer”; you mix (it) together with simdu of barley and kasû, and

2222[ka-mun ŠINIG : UZU?].DIR SUḪUŠ ŠINIG Èú šá-niš ka-mun ŠINIG : na₄gab-ú : na₄gab-ú23

[kamūnu-of-the-tamarisk” means kam]ūnu (which) grows from the tamarisk root”; alternatively, kamūnu-of-the-tamarisk” means “alum.” “Alum” (means)

2323[...]-ú pa-gu-ú : ú-qu-pi šá ap-pi-ta-šú ana IGI-šú qa-pa-at : qa-pu : 24

[] “ape” means “the uqūpu-monkey whose snout collapses (qāpat) towards its face”; “to collapse” means

2424[...] Ú šu-ba-ri : úḪAR.ḪUM.BA.ŠIR šam-mu ḫi-níq-tu₄ : úeli-kul-la

[] “Subarean-plant” means harmunu-plant” (which is) a drug (against) stricture. Elikulla-plant” (means)

2525[...] x : úar-za-ni-ik-ka- : úku-uk-ka-ni-tu₄25

[] arzanikkatu-plant” means kukkānītu-plant.”

2626[...] lu-lu-ú : úḪA : šam-mu nu-ú-nu ka-a-a-an26

[] ; urânu-plant” (written with the signs for “plant” and “fish”) means “fish-plant” literal (meaning).

2727[...] ú*ZI&ZI.LAGAB* : úšu-up-pa-tu₄ : úur-ba-nu27

[] (the writing) u₂ZI&ZI.LAGAB means “rush” (which) means “papyrus”;

2828[... bur]-ti-šam-ḫat : ar-ra-bi : úla-ku* šá kurSU.BIR₄ki28

[ “cater]pillar” means “dormouse”, which means lagu-plant from Subartu”.

2929[...] x [x] úel*-kul*-la* ki-ma zap*-pi ŠAḪ : 29

[] elkulla-plant” (is) like the bristles of the pig.

3030[...]

[]

reverse
1'1'[... a]-ba?-tu U e-pe-šú30

[]

2'2'[... ]NU.ÈŠ den-líl A šá mNUMUN-kit-ti-ḪÉ.GIŠ31

[] nêšakku-priest of Enlil, son of Zēr-kitti-līšir.

3'3'[... A mgi-mil-d30 pa-liḫ dUMUN d]MAŠ u dU.PA NU TÙM-šú32

[ descendant of Gimil-Sîn. He who reveres Enlil, Ninu]rta and Nuska will not take it away!

4'4'[x] di*-ik*-šú? ḫa*-bi*-gal*-bat* x (x) IM É zu-um*-bu* : úKA.ZAL ip- uz-na!(ZA-)ni-tu₄ U ú-lab-bak U i-nak-kis GIM* GEŠTUG-MIN ar-ra-bi33

habigalbat for the ... of the bīt zumbi(-plant); kazallu-plant” (means) “luxuriant(-plant) (which means) uznānītu(-plant); “he softens” means “he cuts” means “like the ears of a dormouse”

5'5'úšu-ḫat-tu₄ ḫa-muṭ U úka-kud U kim-ma-an-ta U šá áš-tu₄ TUKUši : úGIŠ!.GI..LUM.MA SUMUN U -šá-áš bu-ṣi-in šá-di-i34

šuhattu-plant” (stems from) quick (ḫamuṭ). kakud-plant” means kimmanta-plant,” it is the one that has branches; “old buṣinnu-plant” means “bird’s nest made from (lit. “of”) buṣinnu-of-the-mountain(-plant).”

1The sign mat in a-mat is written over an erasure (probably the subsequent AN sign written prematurely). For the interpretation of the signs after ina amat see the discussion by Frahm (2011: 235 n. 1099 and 327 n. 1561). On Kusu, see P. Michalowski in Fs. Hallo pp. 158-159, and on Nigirim, who had a cult place in Uruk, see RlA 9 363-367.

2As noted by Stol (1993: 104), as well as Frahm (2010) and Geller (2010), the commentary begins with a drug drawn from the second column of the base text, for reasons uncertain; Stol points out that in the classical world, stag’s horn was used to detect epilepsy, and Frahm hypothesizes that its prominent position in the commentary may therefore reflect its importance for treating epilepsy in ancient Mesopotamia too (the reading DARA₄ by Geller 2010: 168 is a typo). However, ‘stag’s horn’ appears in another commentary on a therapeutic text, CCP 4.2 Q o 8, as an explanation for the elkulla-plant (“It is like stag’s horn”), and so in this context it may refer to a plant. In the description of the symptoms of the disease ‘Fallen-from-heaven’, the syllabic writing ih-tan-naq could be interpreted as either a Dt perfect, so Stol (1993: 25), a Gtn preterite (so CAD R 435b) or as a Gt durative of hanāqu; however, because the durative is used to describe medical symptoms in o 2-3, the Gt durative option seems the more likely of the three. As noted by Stol (1993: 25-26), it is unclear why the commentator chose to highlight the symptoms described in this and the next two lines, since they are not the only ones associated with these forms of epilepsy.

3In his translation Geller (2010: 171) omits the second occurrence of dLUGAL.ÙR.RA.

4The precise meaning of huṣṣi hīpi libbi is unclear. CAD Ḫ 260b concludes that the expression was “originally probably a hendiadys construction denoting a specific abdominal pain”. For a more recent discussion see Moudhy al-Rashid, “A Note on the Meaning of hūṣu and huṣṣu”, CDLN 2014: 7 (reference courtesy of K. Wagensonner), although note that E. Jiménez’s new reading of the relevant lines in the commentary GCCI 2 406 can now be found at CCP 4.1.13.B. The translation offered here of the phrase ma-gal iṭ-ṭè--pi follows both Geller (2010: 171), who tentatively translates “(a poultice) is excessively applied”, and CAD Ṭ s.v. ṭepû, which (prefaced with the remark, “difficult”) understands the phrase as referring to poultice application. Such an interpretation nevertheless seems out of step with the phrase’s context in this line, namely a description of medical symptoms.

5The interpretation of the final reference to ‘Hand-of-the-ghost’ as summarizing the previous entry follows the translation of Frahm (2010: 174) rather than Geller (2010: 171), who interprets it as referring to the following entry on “ritual.” The equation of napšāru with urʾudu, although otherwise unattested, is reminiscent of two Old Babylonian extispicy omens that refer to the uvula swallowing the trachea and vice versa (see CAD N/1 317a for references). In light of napšāršu, the -su following ú-ru-di seems more plausibly understood as a possessive suffix than a logographic writing of zumru (so Geller 2010: 171) The writing ú-ru-di-su would then be a Late Babylonian spelling of uru’ssu, with CV-CV for CVC. On spellings of this type see M. Streck 2001 “Keilschrift und Alphabet” LingAeg–StudMon 3, pp. 77-97. As noted by CAD T 301a, the commentary’s equation of the poorly understood word ta’u with apāru suggests that the commentator understood ta’u as a form of tê’u, “to cover (up)”. The entry beginning hu-up should be read ḫu-up-pat : šup-lu U AŠ, not as previously ḫu-up-ti? IGI : šup-lu IGI (so CAD Š 3 s.v. šuplu) or ḫu-up-pat! IGI : šup-lu-šú (so Geller (2010: 168)). Moreover, Frahm’s proposal (personal communication) to read AŠ as , a pronunciation gloss for BUR₃, neatly solves the problem of how to understand U AŠ. On ḫu-up-pat see Kilmer (1977: 132 n. 12) citing CAD H s.v. huptu B. Formally, the writing ḫu-up-pat could be understood as a construct state of the singular or plural: the decision to interpret it as plural here is based on the word’s appearance in the base text, where it refers to both the head and the neck.

6As noted by Gabbay (2016: 155), the commentary’s explanation for equating “human semen” with the maštakal-plant ignores the “human” element of the first term. Gabbay suggests that the alternative explanation (“semen means semen”) may be a tacit acknowledgement of this omission.

7The first signs of lu-up-pu-ut-tu₄ are written over an erasure. Scurlock (2004: 256) interprets UZU KA₅ A as the base text, and both útara-muš and ki-ma SUḪUŠ úsi-il-qa as the commentary; the different interpretation presented here is supported by the fact that “fox flesh” is also equated with “soiled towel” in Uruanna (CAD U/W s.v. ulāpu, lexical section). The parallel in Uruanna also indicates that “fox flesh” is very probably a plant name.

8Frahm (2011: 235) suggests that the description of the ‘It-confronted-20-plant’ (imhur-ešrā) as “like the radiance of Ishtar” (šarūr ištar) is based on their phonetic similarity; Geller suggests that there is a play on the double meaning of šarūru as both radiance and cucumber tendril, however Ishtar’s tendril is not otherwise attested. The interpretation of ši-gu--ti follows Frahm (and CAD Š 2 412a) rather than Geller (2010: 171), who translates “barley” (šigūšu). The interpretation of ka-mi-i as “prisoner” (<kamû, “to bind”) follows, e.g., CAD G 50a and K 128a rather than Geller (2010: 171 with n. 265), who translates “outside”, because of the equation of (<kamû with garbānu in a commentary on a line from Marduk’s Address to the Demons in which kamû clearly means prisoner (see CCP 2.2.1.A.a o 14). Geller’s objection to the sense of “to bind” in this context, namely that it is unlikely that lepers were incarcerated in ancient Mesopotamia, is countered by Malul (1993).

9For an alternative interpretation of ki-ma : -ten it-ti a-ḫa-meš ḪI.ḪI : ḪI.ḪI : ba-la-lu see Scurlock (2004: 256). The interpretation of ub-bul-lu as “dried” follows CAD U s.v. ubbulu lexical section rather than Geller 2010: 171, who prefers up-pu-lu, “late”. The interpretation of the signs dku-ši follows Ambos (2013: 191 ad l. 6') rather than Geller (2010: 171), who reads an-dul₅-lim, “of the canopy”; Kūšu belonged to a group of seven demons, the Asakkū, who were defeated by Ninurta. As Böck (2010: 93) suggests, possibly of relevance to his appearance here (and in the base text) is his association with a scapegoat in another text: see RlA 6 382 for details. The same phrase, KUŠ dku-ši, appears in another therapeutic medical commentary, CCP 4.2.R o 7, where its explanation as oxhide is similar to the explanation found in this text, at the beginning of o. 9.

10The interpretation of the signs dku-ši follows Böck (2010: 93) rather than Geller (2010: 171), who reads an-dul₅-lim, “of the canopy”. According to CAD T 409a, tillatu is used with respect to tamarisk only in this commentary and its base text (TCL 6 34 i 7); elsewhere it refers to the grapevine.

11According to CAD G s.v. gizzu, lexical section, ZU = edû means “to know” in the biblical sense. The point of the explanation thus seems to be that kizzu is a male goat of reproductive age, rather than that it is “well known” (pace Geller 2010b n. 267). The rationale behind the triple equation of “smelly plant”, “you remove” and “(it is) like sand” is unclear. Note that šam-ma ḪAB could be a writing for the plant būšānu. For the proposal that the plant urṭû should be identified with the plant attested in Arabic as ’arṭan, see Watson (2016).

12Since “dove droppings” is a name for the seed of the false carob (see CAD S 380), the translation offered here assumes that “raven droppings” refers to the seed of a different plant.

13Following CAD A 1 144b, Heeßel (2000: 351 n. 30) observed that the terms ruttītu, agargarītu and pappasītu are terms that qualify sulphur, not stand-alone terms for types of sulphur. Similarly, Worthington (2006: 33 ad i.14) notes that the commentator’s purpose is to indicate that ruttītu, etc., serve as abbreviated writings for kibrīt ruttīti, etc.

14Regarding the second passage commented on in this line, Worthington (2006: 33 ad i.ll) transliterates and translates: MUN šá ina ŠÀbi ÍD, “salt which (is found) in the river.” However, no ina precedes ŠA₃ on the tablet. Note K.16766 l. 2′ (unpublished): ILLU a-bu-ka- ni-lu [EJ].

15Although asurrû originally meant sewer, by the first millennium its meaning seems to have evolved to “wall footings” (George 2015: 101-102). In this context, the phrase eper asurrê seems likely to be a Deckname of a plant. For the interpretation of the passage from šimGÚR.GÚR onwards, I am indebted to E. Frahm (personal communication).

16The reading ÉN- follows the suggestion of K. Wagensonner (personal communication). The equation of aromatics and urû also occurs in Ura III 109 (cited CAD U/W 260b); the purpose of the additional equation here of urû with “incense” seems to be to explain a general term by means of a more specific one (E. Frahm, personal communication). Although gišEREN.BAD is often read gišEREN.SUMUN (literally, “old cedar”), the term could refer to a particular part or variety of cedar (CAD Š 3 s.v. šupuhru). The equation between {giš}eren.bad and šupuhru is also attested in Ura 3 220-222. On the equation between gišEREN.BAD and bušṭītu ša libbi gišerēni see CAD B s.v. bušṭītu, which suggests that the equation stems from the writing of bušṭītu as GIŠ×BAD in the sign list Ea. As noted by Jiménez (2017: 188), the same equation between gišEREN.BAD and bušṭītu ša libbigišerēni is found in another commentary on a therapeutic medical text, CCP 4.2.W o 4, which was written in 2nd/1st century BCE Babylon.

17The rare equation of UMUN with dāmu is otherwise attested in a commentary written by the Assyrian scholar Nabû-zuqup-kēnu, CCP 3.1.u72 r I. The translation of aš₂-šu₂ MUN sa-mat ša₂ KUR ma-da-a-a follows Gabbay (2016: 158). The translation of suhātu as “armpit” follows CAD S 347a and Gabbay (2016: 158) rather than Geller (2010) and Stadhouders (2012), who translate “crotch”. On the basis of the parallel explanations using kīma in this commentary, “shaved armpit” is understood as a plant Deckname. Kinnier Wilson (2005: 12) suggests emending the text twice to give an aetiology suitable for identifying kurkānû with a type of fern, thus: úkur-ka-nu-ú DÍM! šá(SU)-ḫa-tu₄ <<gul-lu-ub>> úkur-ka-nu-ú šá šá-di-i, “the kurkānû-plant, having been created in a mountain cleft (suhātu for šahātu) is (called accordingly) the mountain kurkānû.” This idea is not followed here.

18CAD K s.v. kurkānû and P s.v. pirizaḫ restore the beginning of the line as [Ú pi-ri]-za-aḫ; Geller (2010: 171) restores [úna]-mu-lu-uḫ; both restorations draw on equations between kurkānû and other plants attested in Uruanna, but neither fits the traces. The second and third explanations of the bi’iltu-vessel as “ghee” and “pressed oil” refer to the possible contents of the vessel, as is clear from a reference to “one bi’iltu of pressed oil” in a Neo-Babylonian letter (TCL 9 117: 44, reference from CAD B s.v. bi’iltu).

19The reading of the damaged signs before nap-har mur-ṣu follows Parpola (1983: 28). The reading ina né-reb follows CAD N 2 s.v. nērebu and nishu mng. A7) rather than CAD A 2 s.v. ašqulālu mng. 3b), Geller (2010: 169) and Stadhouders (2011: Text 1 §31’ and Text II §19), who read ina ni-sih₂. As noted by CAD A 2 s.v. ašqulālu mng. 3b) and Geller (2010: 199 n. 248), the description of the “ašqulālu-plant” in this line draws on a line in the botanical treatise Šumma šikinšu (Stadhouders 2011: Text 1 §31’ and Text II §19).

20As noted by Frahm (2011: 235 n. 1096), the first description of azallû as kīma kanašî is a quotation from Šammu šikinšu (Stadhouders 2011: Text II §8). The second explanation of azallû, as an U₂ nissāt mašê, “plant for forgetting worries,” is similar to its entry in Uruanna 2 2 – according to Köcher’s unpublished edition, as cited by Landsberger (1967: 51) – which describes it as Ú šá-mi ni-is-sa-ti.

21The equation of KU.KU and supandu is also found in the ritual instructions in “Evil Demons”, Tablet 15: 214' and 242', (Geller, SAACT 5 2007: 175-76), as well as in another commentary, CCP 7.2.u132, 6′). On the gloss to KU.KU, compare Diri I 99: e-eḫ-ḫe KU.KU (MSL 15 p. 108).

22The emendation pa-ʾa-ṣa!(A)-nu follows CAD S s.v. sikkatu C, lexical section.

23As noted by Frahm (2011: 234) the explanations relating to kamūn bīni in this commentary are similar to those found in SpTU 1 52 (CCP 4.2.I o 11'-12'), another therapeutic commentary from Uruk, whence the restoration of UZU.DIR (= kamūnu B). An equation similar to the second equation between kamūn bīni and gabû is found in Uruanna III 50 (cited CAD G 7a).

24In its description, the commentator seems to pun on the monkey’s name, uqūpu. For semantic reasons, the verb in question is tentatively understood to be qâpu, “to collapse” (so CAD A 2 s.v. appītu and CAD P s.v. pagû A) rather than qapû B, “to turn upwards” (so CAD Q s.v. qapû). The noun appītu is a hapax legomenon.

25This seems to be the only attestation to date of the arzanikkatu-plant, and the kukkānītu-plant is attested only in one other text, CT 14 50, a Neo- or Late Babylonian copy of a list of “shoots of Marduk-apla-iddina” (see CAD K s.v. kukkānītu). Since both plants are poorly attestested, arzanikkatu may be the explanation for a plant in the preceding, broken away part of the line, while kukkānītu could be the base text whose explanation followed at the beginning of o 26.

26As Gabbay (2016: 187) points out, the usual reading of u₂ḪA is urânu, “anise,” and so the technical term kayyānu cannot mean “regular” here.

27The reading ZI&ZI.LAGAB is courtesy of K. Wagensonner (personal communication), who observes that this sign appears in Diri 4 11-14 (MSL 15), where it is equated with urbatu and šuppatu.

28The collation of the sign previously read as -lu is that of E. Jiménez (personal communication). The lagu-plant is otherwise only attested in the plant-list Uruanna (2, 478) where it has the slightly different name of “lagu-legume” and is spelled differently as well; the entry in question runs as follows: Ú ab-šu la-gu : Ú la-la-gu. If the interpretation of the signs Ú LA KU as a plant name is correct, then both “caterpillar” and “dormouse” can be considered plant Decknamen. A similar explanation for “caterpillar” appears in CCP 4.2.R o 8.

29The same entry appears in CCP 4.2.Q o 7.

30The interpretation of the final three signs as the G infinitive epēšu follows Gabbay & Jiménez (forthcoming), who propose that this and the preceding words represent either the end of the incipit of the base text or the catchline to a second tablet of a possible series. For a different interpretation of this line compare Geller (2010b: 170), who reads: [... uz-nu ra-pa]-áš-tu u E pi-šú, “[… who is] wise and whose speech.” At the beginning, the restoration of abātu (uncertain) is based on the fact that both verbs can be equated with GUL. The tentative restoration of the word before “u” as abātu is courtesy of E. Jiménez (personal communication); it is based on the fact that both abātu and epēšu are readings of the logogram GUL. Collation of the sign following [a]-ba?-tu indicates that it is a U (so Geller) not a NU.

31The reading of the signs before Enlil follows Frahm (2011: 235 n. 1097).

32The restoration of the ancestor name Gimil-Sîn follows Gabbay & Jiménez (forthcoming). The restoration of the god names and the interpretation of dU.PA as an unusual writing for Nuska follows Frahm (2011: 196 n. 921, 236 n.1102), who points out a) that the divine names parallel those found in a colophon of a commentary on Šumma Ālu from Uruk also written by a person of Nippur origin, and b) that U.PA can be read as UMUN-GIDRU/MUDURU, “lord of the staff”, an epithet of Nuska attested in the Emesal Vocabulary.

33The reading habigalbat ana … bīt zumbu and accompanying references are courtesy of E. Jiménez (personal communication). Note ḫa-bi-gal-[bat] in VAT 8903 (KADP 36) iii 1 and úḫa-bi-gal-bat in BAM 267 l. 1. Note bīt-zumbu in Muššuʾu II 46b. The seed of the kazallu-plant is also attested in prescriptions against witchcraft: see CAD K 309b for references. The emendation of uz-za-ni-tu₄ follows AHw 1147b in thinking that the word is the plant name uznānātu, even though CAD U/W 361b considers this “unlikely.” Geller (2010b: 200 n.254) suggests analyzing uṣ-ṣa-ni-tu₄ as D-stem verbal adjective of eṣēnu, “to smell”. The reading u₂-lab-bak follows Geller (2010) and CAD U/W s.v. uribhu, but since the equation of lubbuku with nakāsu is otherwise unattested, the reading u₂-rib-hu (a type of tree, albeit one only attested in lexical lists) remains possible.

34The readings šu-ḫat-tu₄ and kim-ma-an-ta plus accompanying references are courtesy of E. Jiménez (personal communication). Compare A.RA-2 DINGIR.RA KI : ú-la!(PA-)pa / A. DINGIR.RA KI A. : šu-ḫat-tu₄ (preceded by šipātu, širṭi LU₂.SIG₂.UZ₃) in Uruanna III 547 f.; .LUM.MA SA₅ : Ú šu-ḫat-ta-a-ti šatinūri Uruanna III 327 (cited CAD Š/3 205a). The word kimmanta is surely kamantu (also attested as kamandu, kamâtu, and kammantu, see CAD K 109-10). Note the frequent equation between kamkadu and kammantu, which suggest that úka-kud is a writing of the former. The reading úGIŠ!.GI .LUM.MA (already CAD B 348a) rather than Ú PA GI .LUM.MA (Geller 2010: 170) is supported by the equation of úGIŠ.GI .LUM.MA with buṣinnu in the lexical list Ura 3 468ff (MSL 5 p. 136); this passage seems to be the only attestation of the buṣinnu-plant with the qualification “of the mountain.”

Photos by Enrique Jiménez

Courtesy of the Trustees of the British Museum